The scenes of destruction from Superstorm Sandy have flickered across our TV screens for more than a week now. For me, a person who has spent more hours than I can count volunteering in recovery efforts after Hurricane Katrina, the scenes were all too familiar. The devastation, chaos, confusion and utter desolation expressed by victims left many of us wondering, “What can I do to help?” To a group of Jersey Shore natives, now residing in Greenville, the terrible scenes were more than just heart-wrenching, they were personal.  And they decided to do something about it.

After watching news coverage of the storm on TV, “Jersey Boys”, William Vermeal, Richard Squires Jr. & Kip Smith, together with their friends, decided to take matters in their own hands. After contacting friends & family in their previous hometown, they decided to collect items so desperately needed by their former neighbors who live along the Jersey Shore. They plan to ship the items out Friday morning to the residents of Ocean County, NJ, most of whose homes were destroyed by Sandy. Items needed include warm clothing and blankets – warmth is a major issue as temps in the northeast turn frigid, water & non-perishable food items – especially those that need no cooking, as many residents are still without power, over-the-counter medical and hygiene supplies, baby & pet items, cleaning items and more – a list of needed items can be found at the end of this article. Just look at your own family’s daily needs and base your donations on that.

Several businesses have stepped up to help by being drop off locations for donations. Donations will be accepted until Thursday evening, November 8th. Drop-off locations include Carlton Motors, located at 2446 Laurens Road, Greenville (from 9AM-7PM, leave in the care of William Vermeal), Lucky Bike, located at 2 Sidney Street Greenville (from 9AM-5PM, attention Kip Smith) and at The Community Tap, located in Downtown Greenville at 205 Wade Hampton Blvd (from 11AM-8PM).

A nor‘easter is predicted to hit the area affected by Sandy this week, further adding to the misery of victims and hindering recovery efforts. Aid is essential to those affected as over one million homes in the northeast are still without power and temps are dropping below freezing this week.  The scarcity of space for emergency housing has complicated matters further for the tens of thousands left homeless by the disaster. Relief of all forms is desperately needed, so please assist these wonderful guys in their mission to help their fellow New Jersey natives. Let’s show them what “The Greenville Way” is all about!

Items Needed Include:

  • Toiletries, especially contact lens solution, feminine hygiene products, shaving cream & razors, shampoo & soap
  • Baby products — diapers, wipes, baby food, baby formula
  • Advil, Motrin, Tylenol, band-aids, anti-bacterial soap & ointment
  • Garbage bags and other cleaning supplies
  • Paper products — paper plates, napkins, toilet paper, paper towels
  • Ziploc bags
  • Non-perishable foods – especially those that need no cooking
  • Bottled Water
  • Warm Clothing of all sizes for Chlldren, and Adults – coats, sweaters, hats, gloves, etc.
  • Shoes of all sizes for Children and Adults
  • Blankets and Pillows.
  • Pet Food & supplies
  • Soft toys, books and games for children of all ages (like stuffed animals & dolls, cards, travel games)
  • Batteries (especially D Batteries for flashlights)
  • Anything needed for daily living

et cetera